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The 11 Latest Facebook Scams You Didn’t Know About (Until Now)

Scammers are running rampant on Facebook. Learn how to recognize the latest Facebook scams and protect your identity, finances, and online accounts.

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      Are You Getting Scammed on Facebook?

      With billions of active users, Facebook has become the world’s most popular social networking site — as well as a prime hunting ground for scammers, hackers, and fraudsters. According to the latest data [*]:

      Over 62% of Facebook users encounter scams on a weekly basis — the highest out of any social media platform.

      Whenever you use a social networking site, you open yourself up to scammers and fraudsters. 

      In this guide, we’ll explain how cybercriminals target you on Facebook, the latest and most common scams to watch out for, and what to do if you’ve become a victim.

      {{show-toc}}

      What Are Facebook Scams? How Do They Work?

      Facebook scams include a range of grifts occurring on Facebook or appearing to come from the company itself. Facebook scammers use numerous tactics, including fake accounts (posing as friends or legitimate companies), fraudulent giveaways, Facebook Marketplace scams, and more. 

      With more than three billion active users [*], Facebook makes it easy for fraudsters to target thousands of victims in hopes that a handful will fall for their schemes. Scammers also regularly target seniors on the platform, knowing that they’re more susceptible to fraud than other age groups [*].

      If you fall for a Facebook scam, you could end up dealing with serious consequences, such as:

      • Hackers could take over your Facebook account. Fraudsters want access to your Facebook account so that they can scam your contacts or find sensitive information, photos, and videos to use for identity theft or extortion
      • You could end up sending scammers money for fake items. Scammers post fake ads and Marketplace deals that entice victims to use outside payment platforms on which it’s much harder to reverse charges, such as Venmo or PayPal. 
      • You could click on a dangerous link that downloads malware. Hackers use malicious links in Facebook direct messages (DMs) or phishing emails that can infect your device with malware or even give them remote access to your device.
      • Fraudsters could trick you into giving up personal data. Criminals can also gather personal information on Facebook that they can use to either steal your identity or sell on the Dark Web to other hackers. 
      • You could fall for a romance or job scam. These scams have both devastating financial and emotional consequences. It’s heartbreaking to find out that a potential suitor or job prospect you were excited about is actually fake.

      The bottom line: Facebook is an ideal platform for scammers. To protect your online accounts, personal data, and financial information, consider signing up for Aura’s award-winning, all-in-one identity theft protection solution. Try Aura free for 14 days

      How To Identify a Scammer on Facebook: 9 Warning Signs

      Online scams on Facebook come in many different forms. But luckily, there are common red flags that can help you recognize whether you’re being scammed. Be especially cautious if you see any of the following warning signs:

      1. You’re asked to send money online. If someone asks you for money – especially via payment apps (Cash App, Zelle, etc.), wire transfers, or gift cards – it’s most likely a scam. Fraudsters know these payment methods are difficult to trace and almost impossible to refund. 
      2. Strange grammar, spelling, or formatting in their messages. Online scammers aren’t always native English speakers. Strange errors or unnaturally-phrased messages could be signs of a scam.
      3. New accounts with few friends or followers. Scammers create fake social media accounts to target their victims; but if you look closely, there are usually several telltale signs indicating that something is off. New accounts displaying low friend counts, no recent posts, or only a couple of photos are red flags.
      4. Too-good-to-be true deals on Facebook Marketplace. Sellers offering high-ticket items for suspiciously low prices are probably scammers. 
      5. “Perfect” profile photos and few details. Fraudsters use attractive photos on their profiles that they’ve pulled from the internet. If someone contacts you with a profile photo that’s almost magazine-quality, it’s likely a stolen image. 
      6. Unsolicited messages that create a sense of urgency. If you receive a message or call from someone you don’t know, verify the person’s identity and claims before taking any sort of action.
      7. Requests for personal information, two-factor authentication (2FA) codes, and other sensitive data. Fraudsters may pretend to be from a legitimate institution and request information to “secure” your account. No real organization will ask you to do this.
      8. Look-alike profiles for your friends and contacts. Online scammers create fake profiles pretending to be people you know so that you’re more likely to comply with their requests. If you get a random Facebook message from an acquaintance that you weren’t expecting, proceed with caution.
      9. Links to strange websites. Scammers try to direct you to websites that request your personal information. But anything you provide will go straight to the scammer.

      The 11 Latest Facebook Scams You Need To Know About

      1. Fake Facebook prizes
      2. Work-from-home job offers
      3. Fraudulent charities
      4. “Is this you in this video?” link scams
      5. Facebook quiz scams
      6. Hacked asking for 2FA codes
      7. Phony sellers on Facebook Marketplace
      8. Romance scams
      9. Phishing emails claiming to be from Facebook Security
      10. Fake ads
      11. Hacked accounts promoting cryptocurrency investments

      Scammers on Facebook are always changing their tactics. Here are the latest and most common Facebook scams you need to recognize right now:

      1. Fake Facebook prizes and giveaways

      In these scams, fraudsters create Facebook pages for well-known companies, individuals, or even lotteries — and offer “free” money or prizes in exchange for personal information or upfront payments to cover “fees.”

      How to spot a fake Facebook giveaway scam:

      • The giveaway is hosted by a look-alike or spoofed Facebook page. Make sure you can tell who is actually offering the giveaway. For example, lottery scams can be posted on profiles that look like official state lottery companies or fake company pages (such as “Amazon customer giveaways”).
      • You’re asked to pay an upfront fee to receive your prize. Real prizes are free. Anyone who asks you to pay upfront fees for things like processing, taxes, or shipping and handling, is a scammer.
      • You’re told you won a giveaway that you never entered. Always verify that the giveaway is legitimate and one you actually entered before accepting any kind of prize.

      💡 Related: How To Spot a Sweepstakes or Lottery Scam

      2. Work-from-home and other fake job offers

      Work-from-home jobs are highly sought after, with over half of the U.S. workforce wanting to work remotely [*]. Scammers on Facebook and other social media platforms take advantage of this by offering fake jobs to unsuspecting victims.

      It may start as simply as being asked to fill out a job application with information requested such as your Social Security number (SSN) and bank account details. But the application is really just a ploy to steal your personal information.

      How to spot a fake job scam:

      • The perks and salary seem too good to be true. Scammers use unrealistically high salaries and fancy benefits packages to lure you in. Make sure to gut-check any offers that seem overly attractive.
      • You’re asked to pay a fee to apply. Legitimate employers will never ask you for processing fees or any other kind of compensation to process your application.
      • You’re being pressured to accept quickly. Scammers offering fake jobs may threaten to move on to the next candidate if you don’t accept immediately. Any real, reputable company will give you a reasonable timeframe in which to make a decision about a job.

      3. Fraudulent charities and GoFundMe campaigns

      Charity scams on Facebook take several forms — from knock-off websites that look like well-known charities to GoFundMe campaigns requesting help for fake medical costs. The goal is to collect as many donations as possible for their cause, then disappear with the funds.

      How to avoid fake fundraising campaigns:

      • Confirm that the charity's website is legitimate. Scammers sometimes create look-alike websites that match a legitimate charity. Never donate money to a charity via a social media link. Instead, do a Google search of the charity in question for a direct link to their official website.
      • Research who is actually running the fundraiser. Anyone can create a GoFundMe campaign. Make sure you research the organizers to make sure they’re legitimate. 
      • Report suspected fraud on GoFundMe. If you fell for what you believe to be a GoFundMe scam, report the fundraiser here.

      💡 Related: How To Quickly Spot and Avoid Charity Scams

      4. “Is this you in this video?” link scams

      This is a common Facebook Messenger scam designed to play on your curiosity. You receive a message — usually from someone on your friends list — about a photo or video that you’re supposedly in. They provide a link; but if you click on it, you’re taken to a fake website that asks for login details or infects your device with malware.

      What to do if you receive an “Is this you in this video?” link:

      • Ignore suspicious messages. Resist the temptation to click on the link or respond to the message. It’s best to ignore these messages completely.
      • Use Safe Browsing tools. Aura can recognize and automatically block or warn you of fake websites before you enter personal information and passwords. 
      • Report the account and message to Facebook. These scams sometimes come from real people on your friends list whose accounts were taken over by a scammer. If you suspect this, it’s a good idea to report it to Facebook.
      🛡 Get protection against fake websites and online scammers. Aura’s all-in-one solution can help block fake websites, phishing links, and other online scams. Learn more about how Aura keeps you safe online.

      5. Facebook quiz scams that steal your personal information

      Facebook quiz scams are designed to steal your personal information — which can be used for identity theft or sold on the Dark Web. Some of these quizzes ask fun, seemingly random questions that are actually common cybersecurity questions.

      How to avoid Facebook quiz scams:

      • Try to verify who created the survey or quiz. If it’s from a well-known brand you trust, it’s probably safe. But beware that scammers often create fake profiles that mimic real companies. If you’re at all unsure where the quiz comes from or who created it, it’s best to steer clear.
      • Avoid answering common security questions. Questions asking for details like your mother’s maiden name, your elementary school mascot, or the street you grew up on are often security questions that banks and other financial institutions use to secure your accounts.

      💡 Related: The Worst Social Media Scams of 2024

      6. Hacked or cloned accounts asking for 2FA codes

      This is a scam that usually happens after a hacker takes over a friend’s account (or creates a profile “clone” to try and trick you). Scammers use hacked or cloned accounts to request that you share a two-factor authentication (2FA) code that they’re having sent to your email address or phone number. In reality, scammers are trying to hack your account — and the code you share is for your account.

      How to avoid getting scammed by a hacked or cloned account:

      • Never give out 2FA codes to anyone. There’s no reason that any of your friends should need you to send them a 2FA code that was sent to you. If anyone asks, it’s most likely a scammer.
      • Follow up by using an alternate contact method. If you receive a suspicious message from someone on your friends list, don’t reply. Instead, contact them directly (or on a different platform) to confirm whether it was really your friend.

      7. Phony sellers (and buyers) on Facebook Marketplace

      Facebook Marketplace can be a safe place on which to buy and sell goods — but it also attracts a lot of scammers. Marketplace scams usually start with a phony seller offering an insanely good deal, hoping you’ll look past the warning signs that it’s a scam and send a payment. 

      In another version of the scam, fraudsters pose as buyers and reach out to you about your item listing. They request to pay via check (which will then bounce), or overpay and ask you to refund the difference. After you’ve sent the refund, their original payment method will fail and you’ll be out all of the money.

      How to spot a Facebook Marketplace scam:

      • Low prices for high-ticket items. Scammers prey on your emotions by offering amazing deals that you won’t want to pass up. If an item is posted for a price that seems unrealistic, assume it’s fake.
      • Requesting to move conversations off of Facebook Messenger. Marketplace scammers usually ask you to talk off-platform, as this prevents Facebook from being able to investigate or remedy the situation.
      • Asking for payment via a gift card or outside payment platform. Fraudsters know that Marketplace Purchase Protection doesn’t apply to transactions made on third-party sites. Always insist on paying through Meta Pay (Facebook Pay) or with cash – but only after you’ve received the item.

      💡 Related: What To Do If You Get Scammed on Facebook Marketplace

      8. Romance and investment scams over Facebook Messenger

      Romance scams occur when scammers create fake personas and then reach out to you over Facebook Messenger, dating sites, or other social media platforms and try to start a romantic relationship.

      These scams take days or even weeks to play out, but the consequences can be devastating. After the scammer has gained your trust, they ask you to send money — and then disappear once you do.

      How to avoid Facebook Messenger romance scams:

      • Beware of love bombing. If the relationship is moving at a breakneck speed or the other person is coming off way too strong, consider these red flags. Scammers try to move fast so they can get your money as quickly as possible.
      • Limit the personal details you share on your Facebook account. Romance scammers use any details they can find about you to earn your trust and win you over — so always think carefully about what you post on social media.
      • Don’t share Google Voice verification codes. A common Marketplace scam involves fraudulent buyers asking for Google Voice codes to prove you’re not a scammer. In reality, they’re creating Google Voice accounts in your name that they can use to scam other victims.
      🥇 Get award-winning protection against identity theft and fraud. Aura’s all-in-one identity theft protection solution has been rated #1 by Money.com, Forbes, USNews.com, and more. Try Aura free for 14 days.

      9. Phishing emails claiming to be from Facebook Security

      Scammers sometimes send fake emails that look like they’re from Facebook in order to try and gain access to your account or page. 

      For example, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) recently warned about a phishing email sent to Facebook users claiming that their pages have been disabled due to breaching Facebook Community Standards — Users are informed that they need to click on a link and then log in to appeal the decision [*]. 

      How to spot a Facebook phishing scam:

      • Check the sender’s email address. All legitimate emails come from an official Facebook.com email address. Make sure to click on the sender’s “From” name to see if it’s actually coming from Facebook. If not, it’s a scam. 
      • Scrutinize the URL before entering your login credentials. Phishing emails almost always contain links that take you to fake Facebook login pages (or download malware onto your device). If you click on a link in an email, make sure it’s taking you to the official Facebook website. Better yet, use the mobile app, or navigate to the site directly, to log in to your account. 
      • Don’t fall for threats or “curiosity gap” messages.  Scammers try to get you to act quickly without thinking by threatening to delete or ban your Facebook account. In other cases, they may send emails claiming that you’ve received a suspicious friend request or message and that you need to click on a link to view the notification. 

      💡 Related: How To Identify a Phishing Email (20 Examples)

      10. Fake ads and other shopping scams

      Fraudsters use Facebook’s advertising network to target victims with fake ads for cheap products. If you click on these ads, you’ll be taken to a fake shopping website that steals your personal information, credit card numbers, and more. 

      How to spot a fake ad on Facebook:

      • Extremely cheap (or even free) products. Much like fake Facebook Marketplace listings, scammers use cheap prices to get you to look past your skepticism. Any product being sold for 80–90% less than its usual price should raise red flags. 
      • Suspicious e-commerce websites. If you click on an ad, look for the warning signs that you’re on a fake shopping site. For example, poor design and spelling mistakes, missing “About Us” or policy pages, and fake-looking reviews are all red flags of a fraudulent site.

      11. Hacked accounts promoting cryptocurrency investments

      The “pig butchering scam” is a common online scam in which fraudsters convince victims to invest in fake cryptocurrency exchanges that supposedly yield huge returns. They may even allow you to withdraw a small amount of your “earnings” to get you to invest more. 

      On Facebook, cybercriminals may hack your friends or followers’ accounts to make the scam seem legitimate. But ultimately, any money you give to the exchange will be lost to scammers. 

      How to avoid fake cryptocurrency investment scams on Facebook:

      • Ignore claims of “guaranteed” returns on investments. Every investment comes with risks — and anyone who tells you otherwise is trying to scam you. 
      • Check in with your friends and followers. If someone you know or haven’t spoken to lately suddenly starts talking about investing in cryptocurrencies, their account could be hacked. Try contacting your friend through a different method to warn them. 
      • Know the risks of investing in cryptocurrencies. Scammers prey on confusion surrounding cryptocurrencies to trick victims into investing in scams. Make sure you know what you’re getting into, and stick to proven and trustworthy crypto exchanges. 

      💡 Related: The Warning Signs Of a Pig Butchering Scam

      How To Protect Yourself From Scams on Facebook

      • Secure your Facebook accounts with strong passwords and 2FA. A complex, unique password is your first line of defense against scammers – but two-factor authentication can make it much harder for them to gain access to your account. Follow these steps to enable 2FA on your Facebook account.
      • Make sure your backup contact details are up to date. Check your Facebook account’s backup email address and phone number to ensure that you can regain access to your account if it is hacked.  
      • Turn on login alerts to warn you of hacking. Login alerts notify you when someone tries to log in to your account from an unrecognized device or browser. The alert tells you the location and device that tried to break into your account. Follow these steps to enable login alerts on your Facebook account.
      • Use Facebook’s “Security Checkup” tool to update your account privacy. This tool allows you to easily review and add more security measures to your Facebook profile. You’ll need to log in to your account first to start the Security Checkup.
      • Never click on suspicious links in Facebook direct messages (DMs), emails, or text messages. If you receive an unexpected link with little context, be cautious as it could potentially be the start of a scam.
      • Use common sense when dealing with too-good-to-be-true offers or ads. If you’re questioning whether something is legitimate, ask a trusted friend or family member for a second opinion.
      • Decline Facebook friend requests from people you don’t know (or anyone with whom you are already friends). Accepting requests from strangers opens you up to the possibility of scams. If you receive a friend request from someone you know but thought was already your friend, it’s likely a scammer using a cloned profile.
      • Ignore and report messages asking for sensitive information or money. The best thing you can do when receiving unexpected messages containing strange requests is to avoid engaging in any way and report the sender directly to Facebook.
      • Check your login and active session history. Follow these steps to view your login and activity history. Watch out for logins from locations you’ve never visited or actions you don’t remember taking (such as “liking” posts or adding new friends). Any suspicious activity is indicative of a hacker.
      💪 Don’t get stuck dealing with identity theft, fraud, or hacking alone. Every Aura member gets 24/7 access to U.S.-based White Glove Fraud Resolution Specialists along with a $1 million insurance policy to cover eligible losses due to identity theft. Try Aura free for 14 days.

      Did You Get Scammed on Facebook?

      Even if you stay on top of the latest Facebook scams, cybercriminals are always adapting and finding new ways to target you. If you end up getting scammed on Facebook, you need to act quickly to limit the damage and secure your accounts. 

      Here’s what you can do if you think you accidentally transferred money or gave sensitive information to a scammer:

      • Change your passwords and regain control of your Facebook account. If you’ve given scammers your login information or think your account was compromised, change your passwords immediately. If you can’t log in, follow these steps to recover a hacked Facebook account.
      • Report scammers to Facebook. Reporting a scam allows Facebook to investigate and take the appropriate action, like removing the scammer’s profile or banning their account. Visit this page for more information about making reports to Facebook.
      • Freeze your credit with all three bureaus. Contact each of the three credit bureaus individually – Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax – to request a freeze.
      • File an identity theft report with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Report the incident to the FTC by going to IdentityTheft.gov.
      • Scan your device for malware. If you clicked on a suspicious link or downloaded any files, there’s a possibility your device was infected with malware. Running an antivirus scan can let you know if your device was compromised.

      Finally, consider signing up for an identity theft protection service. Aura provides online security, and continuously monitors your personal and financial information so that you can avoid online and social media scams.

      Every Aura plan comes with three-bureau credit monitoring, AI-powered spam call protection, Safe Browsing tools, and 24/7 White Glove Fraud Resolution support. If you find yourself the victim of a social media scheme, you’ll have peace of mind knowing you’re covered by Aura’s $1 million identity theft insurance policy.

      Shut down scammers on Facebook. Try Aura free for 14 days.

      Editorial note: Our articles provide educational information for you to increase awareness about digital safety. Aura’s services may not provide the exact features we write about, nor may cover or protect against every type of crime, fraud, or threat discussed in our articles. Please review our Terms during enrollment or setup for more information. Remember that no one can prevent all identity theft or cybercrime.

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